Best Tennessee Online Betting Sites

Daniel Collins

Written by: Daniel Collins

Last Updated:

Read Time: 6 minutes

Tennessee online sports betting sites have been operating since late 2020. The Volunteer State offers a unique sports betting service. Players make all sports wagers online or via sportsbook apps. No retail sportsbook exists, making Tennessee the one state to offer remote-only online sports bets.

The rise of legal sports betting in Tennessee is one of the more curious cases in the US gambling market. Generally, it is considered a conservative state, with some old-fashioned traditions. However, the Volunteer State shocked the gambling community when moves to legalize online sports betting sprung up in 2019.

Progress towards getting the legislation through was slow and took almost a year. But since November 2020, Tennessee bettors have been able to sign up and wager on mobile sportsbook platforms.

Below, we look at what the state has to offer when it comes to online sports betting.

Best Tennessee Sports Betting Sites in 2023

Sports Betting in Tennessee

Because there are no land-based casinos in Tennessee, bettors make all their wagers at online sports betting sites. It was the first US state was the first to try this approach, and no others have followed suit yet. Other states require sportsbooks to pair with existing casinos before they can start launching their online services. Some states also need players to sign up at casinos, in-person to set up an account.

As a result, the new laws, introduced in November 2020, allow bettors to wager on apps and websites only. Interestingly, retail sportsbook betting is still illegal in the state so residents have nowhere to visit if they want to wager in person. There are also no tribal casinos in the state.

Online Sports Betting Sites

Due to the lack of land-based casinos, Tennessee online sportsbook companies dominate the betting action. The launch of online sportsbooks was initially scheduled for April 2020, nearly a year after legislation passed. However, as professional sports were put on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic, the launch was postponed until November 2020.

Various factors were projected to put off some sportsbooks from launching in Tennessee. Firstly, the online-only approach was considered a risk. Also, the 10% hold for any sportsbook launching in the state was projected to put off some operators. However, with handles of nearly $400 million in October and November 2021, more operators could join the action in 2022.

Horse Betting in Tennessee

Here’s a strange situation in Tennessee. There is one set of horse races that take place in the state each year. But, while thousands of people attend the day of racing, they are prohibited from betting the results.

Actually, there is no pari-mutuel betting of any kind in facilities in Tennessee. Given the location of the state and the weather they have, it is unfortunate because conditions are ripe for a thriving industry.

The government has looked at the idea of expanding into horse racing. In 1987, there was an opportunity to expand the racing scene in Tennessee. The Racing Control Act gave permission for businesses or investors to build racetracks in the state. By 2015, no racetracks had been built and the act was eventually repealed.

Given the steady decline of the business across the country, it is unlikely to be a fruitful industry to invest in.

Online Horse Betting

Although the in-person racing scene has never taken off, the rise of Tennessee online sports betting sites has given hope to horse racing bettors. Some sportsbooks post odds for US horse races. Many also take wagers for some of the big, national races, including the Kentucky Derby.

Not every betting site accepts wagers for horse racing. One of the leading operators in the horse racing arena is TwinSpires. This platform is twinned with Churchill Downs race track and it launched in 2007 as a racebook. It has since expanded into a fully blown sportsbook. But horse racing remains the flagship feature of this sportsbook.

Casino Gambling in Tennessee

Like many other Southern US states, Tennessee generally has conservative views towards gambling. Pair this with the lack of tribes in the Volunteer State and land-based casinos cropping up soon seems extremely unlikely.

Many other states would have farmed out the operation of casinos to a tribal community to reap the benefits without taking on the risk. But this has not happened in Tennessee. There are also no signs of this law changing anytime soon to provide space for commercial casinos to launch in the state.

Online Casinos in Tennessee

The turnaround by the local government to u-turn their stance to allow Tennessee online sports betting sites was a shock. But the buck seems to stop with online sports betting for now.

Rather than opening the floodgates for a host of legalize betting, there has been no talk about expanding the gaming Act to include online casino games. This may come as a disappointment to Tennessee bettors who wanted more from recent developments in online betting. But given the ultra-conservative stance regarding land-based casinos, it is unlikely there will be any movement on this front anytime soon.

Tennessee residents can play casino games at a site that is hosted offshore. However, we do not recommend that option.

Such providers are not regulated and issues can occur when players deposit and withdraw funds. As an alternative, Tennessee betting enthusiasts can wager on social casino websites without outlaying any money. On these websites, bettors play for virtual coins or for the chance to win prizes.

Lottery in Tennessee

The lottery in Tennessee seems to be the one area in gambling where there is no debate. The state took its time bringing in the lottery and it wasn’t established until the early 2000s.

However, since then players from across the state have taken part to try to win huge jackpots in games like Mega Millions. Alternatively, players like to get a quick gambling fix from the instant scratch tickets you can find in hundreds of retail outlets.

Like most states that run a lottery, the proceeds go back into the state for social improvement. The funds are used for things like education, social causes, and infrastructure.

Tennessee Online Sports Betting FAQs

Is sports betting legal in Tennessee?
Online sports betting is legal in Tennessee. Bettors can legally sign up, deposit and wager at the online sportsbooks that operate in the state. However, there are no in-person casinos or gambling establishments in the state. As a result, players cannot place in-person wagers on sports matches or events.
What is the best Tennessee online sports betting site?
Each Tennessee online sports betting site has its own pros and cons. Also, individual bettors have their own preferences when choosing a betting site. Some may prefer a generous bonus; others may favor competitive odds. To help with the decision-making, we provide impartial, well-researched bookmaker reviews.
How do I place a sports bet in Tennessee?
Because all Tennessee sportsbooks are online, players must place wagers via apps or websites. Each sportsbook has its own downloadable app and website, where new customers can sign up. Once an account is created, players can deposit funds and choose the wagers they want. As there are no brick-and-mortar casinos in Tennessee, players can’t sign up and place bets in person.